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14 November 2023

Irish insurers continue to report underwriting profit amidst pressure on margins 

Insurance DataLab subscribers can now access Irish underwriting data through our market intelligence platform

The Irish insurance market continues to operate in profitable territory after it reported an aggregate combined operating ratio (COR) of 97.8%, according to the latest set of insurer solvency and financial condition reports (SFCRs). 

This is, however, some 2.7 percentage points worse than the previous year when Irish insurers reported an aggregate COR of 95.1%. 

This drop in underwriting profitability was driven by a three percentage point increase in the market loss ratio, which climbed to 59.8% for 2022/23, up from 56.8% for the previous year. 

This came as net claims incurred rose by more than 20% to £5.7bn, up from £4.8bn a year earlier. 

The impact of this worsening loss ratio was, however, partially offset by an improvement in the expense base after the aggregate expense ratio fell slightly to 38.0%, down from 38.3% for 2021/22. 

But Irish insurers continue to outperform their UK-regulated peers, who reported a loss-making market aggregate COR of 100.1%. 

Motor Top Performing Business Line 

Of the five largest business lines by gross written premium (GWP), Irish motor insurers reported the best underwriting result with a COR of 92.6%, some 19.1 percentage points ahead of the 111.8% reported by UK-regulated insurers. 

The largest Irish business line, meanwhile, was property insurance with GWP of £6.6bn. An aggregate COR of 97.2% means that Irish property insurers also reported a profitable underwriting result in 2022/23, compared to a COR of 106.1% for UK-regulated property insurers. 

General liability insurance was the second largest market in Ireland last year, but a COR of 102.3% meant it fell to an underwriting loss. This compares to a profitable COR of 88.4% for UK insurers. 

The underwriting performance of all Irish-regulated non-life insurers is now available on Insurance DataLab’s market intelligence platform, allowing subscribers to analyse performance across individual business lines over the last three years. 

If you would like to experience the Insurance DataLab market intelligence platform, you can register for a free trial here 

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